It's quite regrettable, but after analyzing the situation with Hilda - Chief of Strategy - this morning a couple of minutes after 08h00, we decided to throw the towel in the ring and withdraw from the smart-and-the-city driver competition.
A final effort during the early hours of the day worth about 75 more votes resulted in a net gain of 0,0075%. Taking into account that the gap towards the top three positions is over 3% (and closer to 4%) it would take us 30.000 more votes to get to the top position. Even when working in teams and averaging 150 votes an hour per team, it would take over 200 hours to reach that goal.
I can honestly say that we fought with all our might, technologies and logistics available, but we can't beat the odds. We are quite convinced that the Germans are teaming up - and I'm certain I'd do the same thing if the opportunity arose - and a cute face and a nice rack will win from a Geek anytime. I'm not very disappointed - well to be honest, I am a little - but feel like I had a run in with reality. Even if you work hard and give it all you got, there are some things you may not pull off. There is no reason to be sad though, as I think we all learned from it. A lesson learned and an experience richer, we arise proudly.
It certainly would have been awesome to drive around Europe for 3 months in a brand new smart fortwo, meet new people, see new places and leave everything in and around my current life behind for a while. Maybe I could have scored easier or better if I were a woman? Who knows, and it doesn't really matter anymore now, does it? The bell has sounded and ServMe is out of the game.
May the best one win and have a great time. Only thing left for me to do right now is head off to bed and get some sleep after working a graveyard shift. But before I do so, I must thank the following people for all their efforts :
Hilda aka Chief of Strategy - for her enthusiasm and networking skills
Raymond - for setting up technological and support services
Jess, Joco, Hans, Nadia, Marianne, the colleagues and everyone else - for their votes and time invested in this "project"
I'm sure there are tons of people that I'm forgetting here, but please forgive me, I have hardly any idea what strings Hilda has been pulling and who she had enlisted to join the group. Without all of you this wouldn't even had gotten so far. We came from nothing, went all the way to the top, but too early, too soon. It was great being at the top though :)